Compliance improvements for targeting murray crayfish

Operation Symbion saw 13 inland and coastal Fisheries Officers undertake targeted patrols of the Murray and Murrumbidgee Rivers over the opening weekend of the murray crayfish season and King’s birthday long weekend.

For large inland operations like these, coastal officers often provide additional assistance, particularly those in the first year fisheries officer program, as these operations provide important professional development opportunities.

Over 210 boat, riverbank and campsite inspections were conducted over the course of the operation culminating to 689 fishers being checked. Whilst nearly 90% of fishers were found to be doing the right thing, 73 persons were reported for offences ranging from possessing prohibited size murray crayfish, possessing crayfish carrying ova and exceeding their possession limits.

Whilst listed as a threatened species in NSW, strict rules allow a person to take a daily limit of 2 per person, with a possession of no more than 4. Murray crayfish have a minimum size of 10cm, with a maximum size of 12cm and any murray crayfish found outside this slot or found to be carrying eggs under their tail must be returned to the water immediately.

Murray crayfish can only be taken in NSW waters from the Murray River between the Hume Weir Wall and the Newell Highway Road Bridge at Tocumwal including Lake Mulwala and the Murrumbidgee River between the Hume Highway Road Bridge at Gundagai and Berembed Weir.


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